System Thinking in Practice


Course introduction

According to leading researchers in the fields of systems thinking and organizational learning, Systems Thinking offers a language for understanding and working with complexity. The tools and techniques of Systems Thinking enable us to understand the complexity of diverse situations, which will enable us to better able to think and act in ways that produce desired results, without causing unintended consequences. The overall purpose of this workshop is to provide a basic approach in applying systems thinking in a number of organizational situations and to produce sustainable results and enhanced organizational learning. During this course, you will apply the systems-thinking methodology and tools to real situations that you face in the workplace.

Course Benefits

Upon completion of this workshop, participants will be able to;

  • Use the language and concepts of systems, and explain systems thinking and complexity, and their implications for the workplace.
  • Describe specific types of systems called archetypes that may be at play within complex problems.
  • Apply a Systems Thinking methodology and tools to apply their understanding of systems thinking to a challenging situation and opportunity.
  • Explain how to use systems thinking in a variety of situations.
  • Develop an action plan to deal with the challenging problem and opportunity.

Target Audience

This seminar is suitable for professionals and managers currently engaged in working in teams. Much of the work will be based around applying theory to the current challenges and dysfunctions observed in teams which people are involved with.

Course Outline

Programme Overview

  • Introductions to Systems Thinking
  • Ground rules and expectations
  • Opening Case Study
Introduction to Systems Thinking
  • What is Systems Thinking and how is it used?
Structures of Systems Thinking
  • Vicious Cycle, Cycle of Failure
  • Positive and negative reinforcement loops, and short exercises
  • Symptom and problem corrective loops, and short exercises
  • Systems Thinking Steps
  • Systems Thinking Archetypes e.g. limits to growth, shifting the burden and fixes that back fire
Systems Language, Lags (time delays), Consequences and Levers
Systems Thinking in Practice
Guided Practice: Applying Systems Thinking in Organizations –
  • Launch Plan
  • Monitor Plan
  • Project After-Action Debrief
Guided Practice: Applying Systems Thinking in Organizations - Small-group work on real-work related problems and debrief
  • Closure & Summary
  • Action Planning
  • Program Evaluation

Available Course Sessions

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Trainer Profile

Jack Chua

All of our Associate Trainers offer our high level of service therefore are subject to regular peer assessments and interview prior to joining our Institute. They must all be qualified and have relevant experience to an agreed level and are subjected to continual audit and evaluation. Strict internal assessment is implemented as an integral part of our quality control mechanism.